India v England: Michael Vaughan questions spinners' ability as tourists struggle

Zafar Ansari and Adil Rashid
Zafar Ansari and Adil Rashid bowled a combined 38 overs for 130 runs on the first day of the second Test

Ex-captain Michael Vaughan questioned England's spinners after the first day of the second Test against India.

Moeen Ali, Zafar Ansari and Adil Rashid impressed in the first Test following a difficult tour of Bangladesh, but went wicketless in a combined 49 overs as India piled on 317-4 in Visakhapatnam.

"They have gone back to the Bangladesh mode of bowling too many short balls, too many full tosses," said Vaughan.

"In these conditions, under pressure, can the spinners hold a length?"

On a day when England's four wickets were shared between new-ball pair James Anderson and Stuart Broad, the spinners managed only two maidens between them, while Moeen conceded 4.55 runs an over.

In Rajkot, the trio took 13 of the 16 India wickets to fall, but that came after England batted first and posted 537.

"They did it in Rajkot, but there was a massive score on the board and they weren't under pressure," Vaughan, who led England between 2003 and 2008, told Test Match Special.

"India have learned they can put England's spinners under more pressure."

Surrey left-arm spinner Ansari is playing only his third Test after making his debut in Bangladesh.

"I look at Ansari, and he's a batsman who bowls a bit," said Vaughan. "For any spinner, do they spin it, do they put revolutions on the ball? To me it looks like he's just rolling the ball out. To survive at this level, you have to get revs on the ball."

Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara made centuries for India on a day that improved for England when Anderson, in his first match since August because of a shoulder injury, took two late wickets.

However, India captain Kohli remains unbeaten overnight on 151.

James Anderson
James Anderson took 3-44 from 16 overs on his return to the England side

"They got 40 or 50 too many today - we didn't bowl as well as we could have done," said Anderson. "Four down is not the worst for us but hopefully we'll have a good day tomorrow."

The pitch in Visakhapatnam was expected to turn and, although it was ideal for batting on the first day, it may yet provide a challenge for England later in the match.

"England's first innings is crucial," said former England batsman Geoffrey Boycott. "If India bat as they should, it will be near 500. If England bowl well, they might cut them to 450.

"If England can get up to that score, then they are in the game. If England mess it up, it will be hard work batting last."

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